How Much Do Web Designers Make?

by 70 comments
I am at a crossroads in my life at the moment. It's a really fun opportunity and I love the possibilities. I have been looking into Web Design and I am excited by the aesthetics of it.

Now, I wonder, how much can I expect to make as a Web Designer? (conservatively)

And, approximately how much time will it take for the average person to develop the skills required to make 5k/month?
#web design #designers #make #web
  • Profile picture of the author andrej
    It depends on many factors - e.g. how many clients will you have, how good will you be, at what price will you be offering your services, etc.
  • Profile picture of the author addison.agnote
    It will also depend on the quality of your service. The better the service that you offer the higher the probability that you will get high earnings from a web designing job.
    • Profile picture of the author sofa55
      Are you looking to run your own operation, work in-house somewhere, or do a mixture of both?

      Also, what other experience do you have outside of web design? I do web design and SEO work, but I also have a business degree, so I've found that more opportunities exist and I'm able to get different jobs because of my background.

      It's safe to say you'll never starve with web design skills, but like the others have said, there are way too many factors that go into determining what your earnings will be. All I can say with certainty is that a skilled, professional designer never hurts for work and that if you are dedicated to continuous education and always getting better that you won't be disappointed with getting into the field. It stays interesting and the opportunities are limitless.

      Conservative estimates: midwest U.S. designer with an Associates Degree and intermediary knowledge can make $35-45,000 out of the gate by working for a company doing in-house work. Expect there to be a lot of other stuff you have to do besides web design though. Bachelor's degree is a bit more to start, a computer science or programming background can result in significantly more, but there's a lot more to learn there. Starting your own firm will result in a lot less money in the beginning, but obviously there is chance for a higher return down the line. I would suggest getting a steady job and building your business on the side if that is something you want to do. Having dependable income takes a lot of stress off of your shoulders. Plus, you're basically getting paid to improve your craft so it's a win-win.
  • Profile picture of the author Karen Barr
    It can vary enormously depending on what region you live in. I'm in a regional city in the UK and I charge myself out at 15 per hour, because I'm only recently started out on my own and I'm focussing on small business clients.

    Working in London for myself I could easily double that. If I was doing development as well as design then I could probably charge 50/hour.

    If you're committed to learning the craft, I'd say you could pick up the skills within 12 months if you work really hard - like spend ALL your time building sites and improving your skills.
  • Profile picture of the author Hakem
    At the moment, I am a freelancer, with offline clients I charge $1000 per website, and for the site, i just customize a premium wordpress template for them and they pay.
    • Profile picture of the author Wasim
      Originally Posted by Hakem View Post

      At the moment, I am a freelancer, with offline clients I charge $1000 per website, and for the site, i just customize a premium wordpress template for them and they pay.
      If there was a 'LIKE' button for this comment I'd click on it !!
  • Profile picture of the author silverspear
    I am earning $100 for 5 page website, it all depends on your country and region.
  • Profile picture of the author IprovideSEO
    I am in the same position of starting out in web design and offering SEO services as well.

    From the information I have gathered my friends/family that work in SEO firms and Wordpress site creations make $1,500-3,000 per site and an extra $3,000 per month for SEO services.

    The reason they can charge $3,000 per month on SEO services is because the entire firm works on getting your site to the 1st page of Google and increases the ROI (return on investment) for the company 10 fold. If you can create value for a company and show them the results they will employ you. The thing that is hard about starting out is finding clients willing to employ you without any background or evidence that your work can produce profits for them.

    I suggest finding a web design company in your area and work for them for a couple years then venture off on your own (and take clients with you).
  • Profile picture of the author L3ak3r
    It usually depends on you Skills.
    i guess a wordpress theme designer can easily make more than 100 bucks a day
  • Profile picture of the author ezbiz
    The bottom figure should be about $100 for an easy 5 page site, more complex sites at 1k+. But keep in mind that once the core of the site is done the other pages are quick and easy to add. So for some people that could be $100 an hour and for others $100 per day. Depends on how efficient you are and your library of everything needed.
    • Profile picture of the author jasonthewebmaster
      Originally Posted by ezbiz View Post

      The bottom figure should be about $100 for an easy 5 page site, more complex sites at 1k+. But keep in mind that once the core of the site is done the other pages are quick and easy to add. So for some people that could be $100 an hour and for others $100 per day. Depends on how efficient you are and your library of everything needed.
      ?? are you still selling HTML sites?

      nobody charges by page anymore

      even if I did i would never do a site for only $100 - even a 1 page site!

      you are only shooting yourself in the foot when you do that
  • Profile picture of the author jasonthewebmaster
    Don't listen to these amateurs in this thread. If you have the skills then charge more, and expect more, you are worth it!! Unless you are worth only $100, then feel free to charge that...
  • Profile picture of the author jasonthewebmaster
    Originally Posted by jkhdsf View Post

    I am at a crossroads in my life at the moment. It's a really fun opportunity and I love the possibilities. I have been looking into Web Design and I am excited by the aesthetics of it.

    Now, I wonder, how much can I expect to make as a Web Designer? (conservatively)

    And, approximately how much time will it take for the average person to develop the skills required to make 5k/month?

    LOL honestly you shouldn't even consider selling web design services or you will be just like every other amateur who thinks they can make money with web deisgn just because they know a bit of HTML

    then they charge super cheap and it's ridiculous.. since you go around offering $100 web design, then every business owner thinks that they should not have to pay any more than that for a website.. but in reality it's the difference between hiring an amateur with no experience and a real professional.

    no worries, you guys can have all the cheap-skate clients and save the high-end ones for me.. keep scraping the bottom of the barrel and hoping to get rich LOL!
    • Profile picture of the author LeviiStar
      How much a web designer makes is largely situational.

      Of course, how good you are at what you do plays an important part in your earnings but it's not everything. Often, how you conduct your business and interact with clients can act in your favor. And, as long as you can admit defeat and hire a credible freelancer for a couple of hours to sort out things you find you can't deliver, you shouldn't run into any huge problems. The worst thing that could happen would be to start off and find yourself just making your clients angry. A great way to start a new endeavour, eh?

      As for what to charge when you're first getting started, I would suggest that you offer a few local businesses your services free of charge. That way, you can test the waters and get a feel for what a web designer is actually asked to do. You also learn faster from experience.

      Realistically, if you're just getting started with web design, Photoshop, Dreamweaver and so on, it'll be about 1-2 years before you can really start marketing yourself. This timeframe is quite fluid though. If you work hard and are dedicated to learning design techniques and the latest development methods used, you could be making $5k a month as soon as both you and your clients feel that your skills are worth that amount.

      I charge approximately $1,000 per website, with about 10 on the go at any one time, and they're usually a customised WordPress installation or a custom CMS built to the clients requirements. Granted, I 'designed' my first website when I was 11 (I'm now 24) and though it was awful (It was a single page website about Pokemon that consisted only of animated GIFs), I've continued to learn and obviously produce very high quality work now.

      I think the most I've earnt off of one website was $2500 and it took about 8 hours of design/development work and 2 twenty minute meetings at Starbucks. :p
    • Profile picture of the author Karen Barr
      Originally Posted by jasonthewebmaster View Post

      LOL honestly you shouldn't even consider selling web design services or you will be just like every other amateur who thinks they can make money with web deisgn just because they know a bit of HTML

      then they charge super cheap and it's ridiculous.. since you go around offering $100 web design, then every business owner thinks that they should not have to pay any more than that for a website.. but in reality it's the difference between hiring an amateur with no experience and a real professional.

      no worries, you guys can have all the cheap-skate clients and save the high-end ones for me.. keep scraping the bottom of the barrel and hoping to get rich LOL!
      Your attitude is repellent. Just sayin'.
    • Profile picture of the author emdubl
      Originally Posted by jasonthewebmaster View Post

      LOL honestly you shouldn't even consider selling web design services or you will be just like every other amateur who thinks they can make money with web deisgn just because they know a bit of HTML

      then they charge super cheap and it's ridiculous.. since you go around offering $100 web design, then every business owner thinks that they should not have to pay any more than that for a website.. but in reality it's the difference between hiring an amateur with no experience and a real professional.

      no worries, you guys can have all the cheap-skate clients and save the high-end ones for me.. keep scraping the bottom of the barrel and hoping to get rich LOL!
      so does a d*ickhead attitude = a real professional ? because i don't think i'd hire you with the way you come off in this thread.

      just saying...
  • Profile picture of the author gaffg
    Wolffolins.com make $650,000 designing the logo for the 2012 London Olympic games
  • Profile picture of the author Best shared hosting
    Its tottaly depends on your dedication, hard work and your efficiency. If you try your best your earning will also best. Before doing anything just think you can do it and you have to do it.. You will success i promise..
  • Profile picture of the author Ryan Butz
    I think there is good money to be made in websites don't get me wrong, but you have to seperate yourself as just any other designer that can make a nice looking website. If you bring value through SEO, or through branding, or social media efforts than you can put numbers and values to your pricing. If the client is going to get a proven ROI that will bring them in business they will go with you. Atleast the smart business will. It's not about being penny wise and pound foolish
  • Profile picture of the author Patrick
    Well I charge $100-$300 for any website, this way I get more clients and I make more

    And yes one of the reasons why I make much, is coz I spend a lot of hours in front pf my laptop, and I can work FAST.
  • Profile picture of the author Istvan Horvath
    Obviously, some people are completely off...

    SEO is not web design.
    Screwing with a few WP template files is not web design.
    Coding 3-5 html files is not web design.
    Making a logo is not web design.

    And if you couldn't figure out till now what is web design... you'll never will

    Oh, and since "design" is on the creative side of things - it was sad to see there was one word that has never been mentioned in this thread: TALENT.
    • Profile picture of the author Steve Wells
      Originally Posted by Istvan Horvath View Post

      Obviously, some people are completely off...

      SEO is not web design.
      Screwing with a few WP template files is not web design.
      Coding 3-5 html files is not web design.
      Making a logo is not web design.

      And if you couldn't figure out till now what is web design... you'll never will

      Oh, and since "design" is on the creative side of things - it was sad to see there was one word that has never been mentioned in this thread: TALENT.
      "TALENT"

      US statistics, I believe recently say that a web designer, can make at entry level around 40,000 and upwards to 70,000 and even more if they are a creative director of a web agency.

      Of course this is slave labor for sure...................... you will be pushed to produce large volumes of stuff, and probably get burned out within months. Unless you just absolutely love working for others...........
  • Profile picture of the author DesignontheGrind
    Like everyone has said, it depends on your quality of work and ability to market yourself. I also run a full design/development shop for local businesses. You can charge a lot more than 100 or 1k for a quality product.
  • Profile picture of the author brianman
    If you are talking 5000 US $, you're going to find it difficult at the beginning. It takes a designer a few years to gain the right volume of business and good clients to get to a consistent 5K/month. And, unless you already have 10 clients you're working for, you will need a backup source of income. So, don't do this if it's just a hobby. The frustration of working with some of these clients will drive you crazy! But, if you love to design, it will be worth it until you get a bunch of really great clients you can work with every day.
  • Profile picture of the author yobcdarryl
    All this is on the desire and how much time your willing to learn. Are you self motivated and can you do things on you own? There is a big learning curve depending on what software you going to use. The investment for software is not cheap and if you go to school it may 3-6 months to get started. I have found Wordpress the easiest only cause there is so much how to's out there. Another way is purchase the right hosting that may have RV site builder installed in the C-panel and it has over 700 templates and tutorials to walk you through. I am in the process of moving my membership site to wordpress and I have all that in my site. Hosting, tutorials, and more. I am no pro by means but at least I have control or my content and can change things when I what. My budget was small when I started. And I pay someone to do my headers and graphics. But I am learning that as I go. Then I do the rest. I am terrible at copyright and need help. With Wordpress there is so much out there it took me 3 themes till I found the one works best for me. Trail and error.
    Next you need to find the clients to do web design. A lot of local business have sites but unless you can help them get traffic, capture leads, follow up with and autoresponder. Re doing or getting them to spend more money is a little more difficult. So I use a system that I can enhance there website without involving there web designer and make up front money setting it up with very low learning skills has been working for me. Softwares, and systems nowdays have easy to use features without all that schooling and training are becoming the way of the future. here are two personal site I have done Color Country Painting – Quality Services You Deserve! AeroGarden Supplies and Accessories AeroGrow as a Business If I can help in any way let me know. Thanks Darryl Stewart
  • Profile picture of the author filthy
    It is not a single person job because many departments involve in developing a single website, it have graphic, programming, coding, content and much more to show for any venture. In return one can get how much skills and experience work he done before.
  • Profile picture of the author npapazoglou
    The municipality of Thessaloniki (Greece) has paid 85.000 euros for their website at thessaloniki.gr

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